Statement from Professor Keith A Hunter FNZIC, FRSNZ, Vice-President - Physical Sciences, Mathematics, Engineering and Technology, Royal Society of New Zealand
SUMMARY OF STATEMENT
The science of climate change has been the subject of recent harsh criticisms in the popular media, with attacks on the integrity and professionalism of scientists. There is fault on both sides of the equation, with the need for absolute transparency of information being the key issue. Adopting a more transparent approach to the dissemination of information will lead to a clearer picture of the facts.
Science has not “proved” beyond all reasonable doubt that human activities are changing the climate. But it has clearly shown that there are multiple lines of evidence all pointing in the same direction, and this view is supported by theories that are well-founded in fundamental sciences like physics.
Commonsense and prudence says we should respond and not ignore the evidence about climate change as it currently stands. The risks of doing nothing are too great.
The mitigation measures suggested for climate change (reduced use of carbon-based fuels, more renewable energy sources, carbon capture and storage, less use of nitrogen-based fertilizers) are all part of a portfolio of approaches that are needed to produce a more sustainable world.